Ear buds have enjoyed something of a monopoly in the world of headphones since first breaking onto the scene a few years ago. Granted, they provide complete isolation from the outside world, allowing you to completely immerse yourself in music. However, this experience often comes at a cost with mucky separation and more often than not, high end clipping.
Consequently, this is where Sennheiser’s MM60 headphones really challenge the new ear bud paradigm, boasting impressive sound quality, as well as a very reasonable price tag of around £60. Needless to say, they definitely left a lasting impression on us during testing – immediately reminding us of the joys of the on-ear format. Proving, lest we forget, that the more “old-school” style headphones, when done correctly, are still just as good as the new generation ear buds – albeit for different reasons.
On taking the headphones out of the packaging the first thing you notice is how light they are – they literally weigh nothing. However, this doesn’t effect the build quality one bit. The device is well constructed and feels sturdy in your hand. The headphones themselves are extremely comfortable once on, and the foldable design makes for easy storage. Additionally, the accompanying protective case makes them ideal for traveling and safe storage in your bag.
The microphone is extremely clear and simple to use. Both receiving and making calls on the headset is a pleasure, with none of the annoying feedback and hiss often associated with similar devices.
Unfortunately, the MM60 headphones are not perfect and do lose points due to an annoying level of sound seepage, which is a common problem with on-ear headphones, particularly with models like these, which don’t fully encase the ear.
However, this is a relatively small trade off when you consider the soaring range of frequencies the MM60 can produce when compared to similar priced ear bud models, which is a serious point of contention in the ongoing debate concerning which style is best. Nevertheless, during tests we found that on-ear headsets, particularly the MM 60, offers a broad range of frequencies that many, if not all, ear bud devices struggle to replicate.
In terms of aesthetics, they aren’t the best looking headphones in the world, with comfort and sound quality obviously winning over design gimmicks. But don’t be fooled by its meagre appearance, the level of clarity and separation between both the low-end and high-end frequencies is astounding, and compliments all genres of music from bass heavy electronica to screeching thrash metal.
If you had to compare the MM60 to a person, say an actor, it would have to be William H. Macy. Sure, there’s plenty of better looking models out there, and some will even put in a good performance every once in a while, but when it comes down to it, and you want to great value for your money, you can always rely on Macy – and its exactly the same with the MM60.